The Ministry of Welfare and Health prescribed regulations for the labeling of beverages prepared on-site with a maximum fine of NT$3 million for an offender(Taiwan)

Ankwei Chen

The Ministry of Welfare and Health promulgated the Requirements for the Labeling of Beverages Prepared On-site by Beverage Chains, Convenient Stores and Fast Food Operators (the “Requirements”) in its Bu-Shou-She-1041302569 Circular dated July 20, 2015 (the “Circular”)).


Points 2 and 3 of the Requirements specifically stipulate that the scope covers registered beverage chains, convenience store chains and fast food chains. Chain stores here refer to operators who use the same name on the company or commercial registration, or through franchising or licensing.


Point 4 of the Requirements stipulates that beverages prepared onsite must have sugar content labels and the caloric value of such sugar additive. The amount of sugar may be converted and expressed through number of sugar cubes (5 grams per cube) at 4Kcal per gram or 20 Kcal per cube.


Point 5 of the Requirements separately provides for labeling requirements on specific beverages such as tea, coffee and fruit/vegetable drinks. For tea, he place (country) of origin of the ingredients shall be specified; if the ingredients come from two or multiple places (countries), they shall all be labeled in descending order based on the quantities of the ingredients.  If the beverage is not made out of tea leaves but through additives such as tea essence, the name of the item shall be specified with expressions such as “XX-flavored” or “XX taste.” For coffee beverages, the place (country) of origin of the ingredients shall also be specified.   In addition to labeling each place (country of origin) in descending order of quantity if the ingredients come from two or multiple places, there needs to be a mark in red/yellow/green or other icons to indicate level of caffeine content..   For fruit and vegetable drinks, the concentration of fruit and vegetable juice shall exceed 10% before they may be named as “XX Juice.”  If there is no fruit and vegetable juice is contained, expressions such as “XX-flavored” or “XX taste” shall be indicated in their item names.


Point 6 of the Requirements provides that the labeling specified by the Requirements shall be made in Chinese in a conspicuous manner, such as on a card, menu, label (tag) or sign (signboard) posted, hanged, erected (staked), attached or set up in other sufficiently clearly discernable manners. If the labeling in the preceding paragraph is made on a menu or label (tag), the length and width of the font shall not be smaller than 0.2 cm; for all other types of labeling, .  the length and width shall not be smaller than 2 cm each.

A violation of the public announcement made under Article 25, Paragraph 2 of the Act Governing Food Safety and Sanitation, such as this Circular, a fine of NT$30,000 to NT$3,000,000 may be imposed in accordance with Article 47, Paragraph 1, Subparagraph 9 of the same law.